Maine Restaurant Gets Lobsters High To Calm Them Before Being Cooked
Steamed, Boiled Or, Like, Really Baked
September 24th, 2018 – A chef in Maine has come up with what she hopes is more than a half-baked idea for treating lobsters more humanely: she’s getting them stoned. Charlotte Gill opened Charlotte’s Legendary Lobster Pound seven years ago and, like many other chefs who reign over crustacean fare, has wondered how to make their transition from tank to pot easier to digest.
Knowing that lobsters can feel pain, Gill has tried to break away from the traditional preparation of simply throwing the live creatures into a boiling pot. As a licensed medical marijuana caregiver, she decided to see if exposing the lobsters to weed would sedate them thereby making their inevitable end less traumatic.
“I feel bad that when lobsters come here there is no exit strategy,” Gill told the Mount Desert Islander. “It’s a unique place and you get to do such unique things but at the expense of this little creature. I’ve really been trying to figure out how to make it better.”
Gill set up her experiment by creating a “hot box” and finding an agreeable test subject. Enter Roscoe. He was placed into a box with roughly two inches of water at the bottom, and then stayed put for a few minutes as marijuana smoke was blown in through the bottom of the box.
Gill then observed Roscoe for three weeks and found that his demeanor changed. He was calm and did not use his claws, which were now band-free, against fellow lobsters back in the main tank. He also may now be on a perma-high since being released back into the ocean as a parting gift for being the guinea lobster.
Customers at the Lobster Pound currently have their choice of ordering off the sober menu or the stoned menu. Gill boils and steams lobsters while they’re still alive but also has a separate area where the creatures get the cannabis treatment before being steamed. And for any parents who worries that their teenager keeps suggesting the restaurant because they think they’re getting an edible, the chef can calm your fears.
“THC breaks down completely by 392 degrees, therefore we will use both steam as well as a heat process that will expose the meat to 420 degree extended temperature, in order to ensure there is no possibility of carryover effect (even though the likelihood of such would be literally impossible),” Gill said.
PETA, the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, doesn’t seem to be buying what Gill is selling, and some people on Twitter seem to agree.
“It is highly unlikely that getting a lobster high would make a lick of difference when it comes to the full-blown agony of being boiled or steamed alive,” PETA said in a statement to Marijuana Moment. “There is a well-established, foolproof way to prevent crustaceans from suffering, though, and that’s by not eating them.”
Maybe I’ve only smoked crap weed but I’m pretty sure I’d still have noticed if you boiled me alive. https://t.co/APFrge1r2d
— Ezra Klein (@ezraklein) September 20, 2018
Least knowledgeable post of the decade by a stoner cook who figured out how to make being high at work acceptable. Lobsters & crabs don’t breath air. Even if they could get high – they can’t. Plus, Weed is not an anesthetic for being boiled to death. Ridiculousness out of control
— JustTryingToMatter (@NoFacebookForMe) September 20, 2018
There is no evidence to suggest blowing weed smoke at lobsters has any positive effect, or any effect, so it might be a brilliant marketing move which is concerning because lobsters have marketing degrees but never get a chance to use them.
— Seth Macy (@sethmacy) September 20, 2018
Chef in Maine: So I’ve found that I can make the lobsters high, and then it’s a more humane way of killing them.
Michael Scott: pic.twitter.com/PeAq9qgT1M
— Melissa Jordan (@mjjordan7) September 20, 2018
Gill maintains that the process is a plus for both the lobster and the diner saying:
“The animal is already going to be killed. It is far more humane to make it a kinder passage. The difference it makes within the meat itself is unbelievable. Everything you put into your body is energy.”